One of my favorite games as a child was Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade for the PC. This might be hard to fathom now given video games based on movies are generally terrible, but this particular example was a masterpiece. It was a brave game, willing to deviate not only from the movie’s plot, but the very identity of its iconic character. On the silver screen, Indiana was a grizzled, treasure-hunting, Nazi-hating cowboy. In the game, you could role play Indy as Indy, but you could also make him a total pussy.
Many of the game’s challenges could be bypassed by any number of tactics, whether they be swashbuckling, smarty-pantsing or even self-degradation. One of the choices I feel is underrepresented in the mod is the option to role play as a scrawny twerp. This is mostly because I am lazy and it’s hard enough filling the more widely used paragon/renegade/jester options, but I do like to add the occasional “I am but a lowly milk-drinker,” if nothing else but an homage to this game. After all, I took no small delight from being able to tell Nazis “I am but a lowly worm” before slapping the taste out of their mouth.
Suffice to say, Indy was influential. Although technically speaking, so is everything. Some influences are positive, some negative, and some prevent you from legally operating a motor vehicle. And while I have a hard time distinguishing between the three, when I played Indy it felt like video games were a positive experience, even if that seems out of character.